Why Immigration Reform Is A Big Plus

Why Immigration Reform Is A Big Plus

This is a short excerpt from the non-profit organization, American Immigration Council, in its newsletter “Entrepreneurship and Innovation Update,” dated November 18, 2013.  It appears in html format, with hyperlinks, athttp://www.immigrationpolicy.org/entrepreneurship-and-innovation-update-november-18-2013.  This may be of particular interest to readers who may benefit from proposed Comprehensive Immigration Reform, but will be appreciated by anyone who has an interest in the contributions of immigrants to the American way of life.

“Immigration reform would positively impact economic growth, budgets, and housing. A November 1 post overviews a recent report from the Bipartisan Policy Center and Macroeconomic Advisers. The analysis shows that over the course of two decades, the Senate’s immigration bill (S.744) would increase economic growth by 4.8 percent, lower the federal deficit by $1.2 trillion, increase demand for housing, increase the size of the labor force, offset the aging of the native-born workforce, and raise wages over the long-term. The accompanying infographic provides an illustrative summary of the report’s major findings.

“Immigration Myths and Facts: Report interjects facts to dispel common immigration myths. On October 28, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce released an updated version of its immigration myths and facts report. …. The compilation shows that immigrants significantly benefit the U.S. economy by creating new jobs, and complementing the skills of the U.S. native workforce, with a net positive impact on wage rates overall.

“Immigration leads to local job growth in metropolitan areas. An October 25 post highlights a new report by economist Jack Strauss of the University of Denver, looking at the broader trends of how immigration helps metropolitan areas. Through statistical analyses of 505 metropolitan areas using data from 2005 to 2011, the report finds that immigration helped employment growth and small business creation. Specifically, an increasing number of immigrants moving to an area leads to significantly higher employment growth, a rise in employment share, and a decline in the unemployment rate. Additionally, rising rates of immigrant entrepreneurship, including self-employment of immigrants, leads to greater job creation in a metro area.

“New state resource pages highlight the economic and political impact of immigrants state-by-state. The American Immigration Council recently created new state resource pages for all fifty states. The pages compile a variety of research reports, fact sheets, commentary, and blog posts related to each particular state. An interactive clickable map of the United States provides easy access to each state’s resource page. ….

“It’s time to return to the economics of immigration reform. In a November 12 op-ed for the Daily Californian, Kevin Shih, in the Department of Economics at the University of California at Davis, describes reasons why there should be more focus placed on the economics of immigration reform. Specifically, he describes research that shows how immigrants from across the skills spectrum are beneficial to the economy. Shih also states that “political stagnation is destroying the possibility of immigration reform. We must refocus attention on the facts .…  Grounding discussions in research and facts, instead of in airtime for rabble-rousers, will ultimately improve our chances at reform in the next rounds – whenever they may be.”

“New television ad urges leaders in Congress to pass immigration reform.  A new, nationwide television ad from www.FWD.us points to immigration reform’s economic benefits and urges Congressional leaders to pass immigration reform. Additionally, a November 18 article in Politico summarizes the ad, which features comments from democrats and republicans in Congress and from the Administration. “Americans of diverse backgrounds and beliefs have made it clear that the time is now to fix our broken immigration system and take action on meaningful reforms,” FWD.us president Joe Green said. “Immigration reform will grow our economy, create American jobs, and do right by American families.” ….

“Atlanta officially becomes an immigrant welcoming city. An October 25 post highlights the recent announcement from Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed that the City of Atlanta would officially join Welcoming America’s Welcoming Cities and Counties Initiative. During the announcement, Mayor Reed said the city’s success is tied to the talent and engagement of all of its members, including immigrants. He also said that, through this partnership, “Atlanta will continue to work on welcoming, including, and supporting the economic and social contributions of immigrants to enhance our city’s cultural fabric, economic growth and global competitiveness.” Mayor Reed added, “Our country has always been a nation of immigrants and entrepreneurs…Immigrants from around the world have kept our workforce vibrant and on the cutting edge …. I think that’s a pretty good message on why we should continue [to embrace] immigration.”

“Chicago Mayor sees the contributions of immigrants every day. In a November 8 piece for the Chicago Sun Times, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel noted the contributions of immigrants to Chicago. “The moral imperative and the economic imperative don’t always align,” Mayor Emanuel said, “but when big and small businesses, labor, tech startups, universities, religious leaders, law-enforcement agencies, advocates, community members and elected officials of all stripes agree that we need to fix our broken immigration system, it’s clear that legislators standing in the way of immigration reform are on the wrong side of history and on the wrong side of the American people and economic growth.”

“The cost of inaction on immigration reform grows with each passing day. On November 7, the Center for American Progress released a counter showing the rising costs of inaction with each passing day that Congress delays immigration reform. While the Senate passed its immigration reform bill (S.744) in June, the House’s inaction has cost the United States over $5.1 billion (as of November 14, 2013) in additional tax revenues. Each additional day of delay that passes, another $37 million in revenue is lost. This fiscal clock is yet another way of showing the powerful fiscal and economic impact immigration reform would have on the United States.

“To view previous editions of our Entrepreneurship and Innovation Update visit our archives.”